At its July meeting, the AALL Executive Board will consider a proposed Antitrust Policy
(page 42 - requires member login) for AALL.
The proposed policy is on the July agenda for discussion by the board. This does not mean the policy will be adopted as written. In fact, President Joyce Janto is confident it will not be adopted as written because the board is aware members would not be satisfied with this policy, without further revision.
However, it is the policy that was developed by legal counsel, and it is the board's fiduciary responsibility to consider the policy as submitted and then to make decisions as to how to proceed. The board has a number of options available as to how to move forward on this issue (or if to move forward at all), and after the meeting President Janto will advise the membership of the board's actions; Janto assures that its actions will be in the best interests of all members.
Vendor pricing and practices are important issues to AALL members. It is an issue the Executive Board has been grappling with for many years. One facet of this issue involves antitrust law, and many are in agreement that it does have some bearing on what AALL can and can't do as an association.
For a number of years, many members have inquired about a policy in this area which would clarify the role AALL can play in representing the interests of our members with vendors. The Executive Board has discussed this since that time, and that is why President Janto recently asked AALL legal counsel to develop a PROPOSED
antirust policy for AALL.
There is a lot of online discussion taking place regarding this agenda item, and it is helpful for the board to hear from members. One of the main reasons the Executive Board books are made available on AALLNET for all members to review is so that members can comment on issues that the board is considering. So President Janto thanks everyone who has commented on this issue.
AALL recently accomplished a major feat - the adoption of the Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act
. This promises what could be the greatest opportunity for increased competition in the marketplace. When adopted by the states, legal information will be widely available to the public, members of the legal profession, and start-up publishers. This is the power of AALL and members.